FONT & AUDIO

MORE STORIES


The annual event, which celebrates Latino, Pacific Islander and Asian community culture, is set for Atfalati Park.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Viva Tualatin!, the citys annual festival celebrating Latino, Pacific Islander and Asian communities, is set for Saturday, July 9, at Atfalati Park, 6600 S.W. Sagert St. Here, dancers with Danza Azteca perform at Tualatins first Viva Tualatin! event in 2019.  Tualatin is gearing up for its first all-in-one location festival celebrating Latino, Pacific Islander and Asian communities in two years on Saturday, July 9, with the return of ¡Viva Tualatin!

This year's event runs from noon to 7 p.m. at Atfalati Park, 6600 S.W. Sagert St.

While the COVID-19 pandemic canceled the 2020 event, ¡Viva Tualatin! was held at three different venues last year in an effort to keep crowd sizes smaller to avoid spreading the disease, according to Heidi Marx, parks and recreation event coordinator.

Betsy Rodriguez Ruef, the city's community engagement coordinator, said she's happy to see a return of the big event that brings families together. The city held its first ¡Viva Tualatin! event in 2019, replacing the two-decades old ArtSplash. "We have performances. We have vendors. We have lots of activities for children," said Ruef. "We're bringing back the very popular face painting."

There will also be a giant mural that children can color. Other activities will include crafts and a liquid chalk art station.

Returning to ¡Viva Tualatin! this year are several longtime favorites of the event, celebrating the arts and culture of various ethnic groups.

That includes the return of Angel Ocasio, a comedian, actor, clown, writer and ukulele player set to perform at 12:30 p.m.

Also returning at 1:30 p.m. will be Ballet Folklórico, which honors Mexican culture and heritage, and Danza Azteca, a group that teaches indigenous Aztec culture and traditions through dance, music and the arts set for 3 p.m.

Paradise of Samoa, which performs authentic Samoan, Tongan, Fijian, Maori, Hawaiian and Tahitian dances, will perform at 4:30 p.m., with the White Lotus Dragon & Lion Dance, which features Asian cultural lion dancing and dragon dancing, wrapping up the event at 6 p.m.

"We have two rounds of (breaking) pinatas," said Marx. "We'll have a giant inflatable obstacle course. We'll have lawn games."

Tualatin police officers will be on hand to help man the five piñatas that children can take a swing at.

Scores of vendors and food booths will be set up as well, the only part of the festival that won't be free.

Ruef said families are encouraged to wear any type of cultural jewelry or outfit they would like to showcase.

The day before ¡Viva Tualatin!, the city will host Conjuto Alegre, a staple in the live Latin music scene since 1987. They perform from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., also at Atfalati Park.

"It's kind of a 'Viva' weekend, so that should be a really good concert, too," said Heidi. "It's our first one of the summer, so that's fun."

Of pints and pumpkins

One of Tualatin's premiere festivals, the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta, not only returns this October but was recently named the recipient of a prestigious accolade. {obj:63831:U.S. News & World Report}, a national online magazine, listed the festival as one of the top 24 fall and harvest festivals in the United States.

After a two-year hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the pumpkin regatta is set for Oct. 15 and Oct. 16. This will be the first time the regatta — the actual race around the Tualatin Lake of the Commons in giant carved-out gourds — will be held on a Sunday. The Pumpkins and Pints and Terminator Weigh-Off will be held at Stickmen's Tualatin Beer Hall the day before.


You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.


Have a thought or opinion on the news of the day? Get on your soapbox and share your opinions with the world. Send us a Letter to the Editor!